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Pizza Fun

Pizza is such a fun, easy and often very sociable thing to make with children and adult friends alike.

While at a friend’s house recently (who coincidentally is a fabulous cook!) she had pizza dough proving by their slow combustion fire…just waiting for the kids to get their hands on it!

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Kirsty’s Pizza Dough Recipe

  • 1 kg flour
  • 3 teaspoons (10g) yeast dry
  • 15g salt
  • good dash of EVOO
  • water to bring together

Knead until smooth & elastic

Prove until double in size

Knock back, portion and roll out before topping with your favourite ingredients (see further down for ideas)

Thin & crispy: 200 degrees for about 10-15 minutes (bottom should be golden brown)

* Halve recipe for enough dough for 2 adults and 2 children (plus a little left over for cold pizza the next day!)

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Aprons were donned and a bit of flour (or fairy dust!) sprinkled in front of them, a rolling pin each and away they went…

Pizzas don’t necessarily need to be regular in shape, in fact a bit irregular looks and somehow tastes more authentic!

Next it was time for the sauce…homemade of course – a thick mixture of tomatoes, carrot, celery and onion.

A nice big spoonful spread all over the rolled pizza dough base…and then it’s time to choose toppings…

Toppings can be as simple or creative as you like but the beauty of having a decent selection is the children and adults can be encouraged to create a tried and tested favourite selection of toppings and/or perhaps try something completely new. While children might like to make and eat their own pizza they may also enjoy trying some of the other creations that eventually come out of the oven.

An idea of some topping choices follows but you are only limited by your imagination:

  • Grated cheese &/or feta, goats cheese, mozzarella…
  • Olives, semi sun-dried tomatoes
  • Mushrooms, corn, baby tomatoes
  • Capsicum slices – variety of colours
  • Tuna, prawns, anchovies
  • Artichokes, asparagus spears
  • Pine nuts
  • Ham, prosciutto, chorizo or similar
  • Red onion, chives, spring onions…
  • Baby spinach
  • Capers, basil, oregano, roasted garlic…

The jury is out on whether less is more when it comes to pizza toppings…I tend to overload mine…it’s a personal thing!

Once complete it’s into the oven (regular or pizza oven…or even BBQ) and get ready for some delicious smells to start emanating and your saliva ducts to begin working overtime…

And once your pizzas are cooked to taste, the table is set and drinks poured; it’s time for the next fun thing…eating! By the time I took the photograph of Dylan in the photograph on the right he had already polished off two pieces, had been cleaned up a little and was going back for more! Love a good eater!

Enjoy!!

Further Activities Related to Pizzas

Make paper pizzas

Dependent on age and abilities of the child, find a decent sized circular shape for children to trace around and then cut to make their pizza base. You may need to do this part or help as necessary.

Talk about the type of pizza toppings (real or imaginary) the child/ren would like to create.

A selection of old magazines and/or different coloured papers or recycled scraps can be used to find and cut, tear, scrunch and roll to create different toppings. My daughter insisted that all the three pizzas she made (she couldn’t stop at one!) have pink cheese on them and she loved cutting up pieces of pink cellophane that had previously been used as wrapping paper. Her friend Ruth enjoyed scrunching up pieces of the same said cellophane into balls, to make them look like cherry tomatoes.

Once you have created plenty of toppings it’s time for gluing/pasting.

A simple natural home made glue recipe follows:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar

Method:

  • Mix flour and sugar in a saucepan
  • Add half the water and mix into a thick paste – without lumps if possible.
  • Pour in the rest of the water and mix into a smooth paste.
  • Add the teaspoon of vinegar and put on medium heat until the mixture starts to thicken.
  • Cool and transfer to an air tight container.

This glue will keep for a few days if left out. Alternatively refrigerate to prolong life (I’ve kept a jar for a couple of months successfully in the fridge). Yes – our fridge is filled with tubs of homemade playdough and glue!!

The great thing about this glue aside from the fact that it works is that it is completely edible if those younger children insist on trying it out…it doesn’t taste great but it won’t hurt them which is the most important thing.

Let you glued pizza toppings dry and then it’s time for some pretend play pizza fun! My daughter still uses the ones she made weeks ago for regular pizza picnic parties with her friends of the furry variety.

A Pizza the Size of the Sun by Jack Prelutsky

I’m making a pizza the size of the sun,
a pizza that’s sure to weigh more than a ton,
a pizza too massive to pick up and toss,
a pizza resplendent with oceans of sauce.

I’m topping my pizza with mountains of cheese,
with acres of peppers, pimentos, and peas,
with mushrooms, tomatoes, and sausage galore,
with every last olive they had at the store.

My pizza is sure to be one of a kind,
my pizza will leave other pizzas behind,
my pizza will be a delectable treat
that all who love pizza are welcome to eat.

The oven is hot, I believe it will take a year and a half for my pizza to bake. I hardly can wait till my pizza is done, my wonderful pizza the size of the sun.


**Jack Prelutsky has had many poetry & stories books published…all great fun for children.

Try www.booktopia.com.au or www.fishpond.com.au to buy online in Australia.